time to move on, and forget the disappointment of last night's game. big game tonight now.
win tonight and you're up 3 points on detroit, before they play tomorrow (at home against STL, so a win most likely). and before our big game with them saturday. after detroit, we have four very winnable games in a row, even if three of them are on the road. (@PHIL, @STL, CHI, @PHO). a chance here to gain a slight bit of cushion before the tough part of the west coast swing (finishing @ANA, @LA, @SJ) , that will complete this tough opening stretch, if we take care of our business. we need to get hot right now during this part of the schedule.
you also want to win tonight for the simple fact of self-confidence. losing two straight games after arnott going down could impact the mentality on ice and in the locker room. get in a team's head, that they really miss an particular guy, and they will struggle even in games they should win. so we need this one, badly in my mind.
vancouver is another tight checking team, when you play from behind that is. we've gotten ahead of them both times and made them open up and played two pretty high scoring games because of it. this isn't their best type of game. it is ours. they're averaging only 2.43 goals per game, giving up only 2.50 though. get behind them and they tend to trap and slow the game down this year. play from in front, and it'll be exciting hockey, with our best chance.
keys are to control the sedin line and naslund of course. naslund with 13 goals, 30 points against us in 30 games. always tough. sedins with their puck control game present a real challenge for our defensivemen. overall their even strength play has been below average, their pp very weak (which it shouldn't be with the personnel they have) and their pk and goaltending the strengths of the team. we could see their rarely used backup goaltender tonight i suppose, what with luongo going last night. sabourin. he only has one start this year and has played less than 90 total minutes. has never won an NHL game. if we do, we need to torch this guy. i fully expect to see mason in net for us. he has to bounce back from the last time out himself.
very little trotz can change personnel wise for us tonight. vasicek supposedly still out til next week, means we only carry 12 healthy forwards. hopefully dumont isn't too banged up from last night's injury. we need an aggresive forecheck tonight to generate some easy scroring chances. and we need our d-men to handle the puck well, because they have a pretty good forechecking team. we need to win the battles even strength, if we beat them special team-wise we should walk away with this one.
now off to turkey-land, let's all keep our fingers crossed about tonight. see everyone at the game